Merkel approval rating at record low, poll shows

BERLIN, June 16 (BestGrowthStock) – Support for German Chancellor
Angela Merkel has plunged to a record low, a poll published on
Wednesday showed, and nearly half of those surveyed said they
wanted new elections.

An Infratest dimap survey showed only 40 percent of Germans
were satisfied with Merkel’s performance, her worst rating since
she took office in November 2005.

Approval ratings for Merkel’s government, a coalition of her
conservatives and the pro-business Free Democrats (FDP), also
slipped. Only 12 percent said they were satisfied with it.

Merkel’s standing has been battered by infighting within her
centre-right coalition, the resignation of President Horst
Koehler and criticism of her planned austerity cuts.

Some 47 percent said new elections would be the best option
given a choice between that, a continuation of Merkel’s
centre-right coalition until the next scheduled vote in 2013 and
a “grand coalition” of conservatives and the centre-left SPD.

Some 24 percent said they would prefer a “grand coalition”
to the current government, which only 23 percent said should
continue.

However, the poll also showed that only 35 percent of
Germans believed new elections would actually take place while
41 percent expected Merkel’s coalition to soldier on.

Several newspapers have reported that the government is in
crisis and may be heading for collapse less than nine months
after the last federal vote.

One opposition leader has called for new elections.

An Emnid poll on Sunday also showed that 55 percent of
Germans do not think the coalition will last until federal
elections due in the autumn of 2013.

Merkel, 55, has also been overtaken by opposition leaders in
the popularity stakes for the first time as chancellor,
Infratest dimap said. Heads of the Social Democrats (SPD) and
the Greens both scored higher approval ratings, the poll showed.

Topping the popularity stakes, with an approval rating of 68
percent, was Defence Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg, who
media reports said had threatened to resign earlier this month
during a row over the government’s budget consolidation plans.

The survey of 1,000 voters was conducted for television
channel ARD on Monday and Tuesday of this week.

Investment

(Reporting by Dave Graham)

Merkel approval rating at record low, poll shows